football players retire

What age do football players retire?

Basically, the retirement age for a soccer player has no limit. Due to multiple reasons, a player can retire even at his prime or young age. But in most cases, players retire when they reach their late 30s. Ryan Giggs was an example of how a person could have such a long career. The Welsh legend started playing at 18 years old for Manchester United and retired at the age of 40 for the same club. David Beckham retired at 38 years old. He spent 31 years playing for multiple clubs such as Manchester United, Real Madrid, LA Galaxy, AC Milan, and Paris Saint-Germain. 

Another football legend, Zinedine Zidane, started his professional career at the age of 17 with Cannes in a game against Nantes. He retired in 2006 after the final of the 2006 World Cup, when France lost to Italy. There is no significant difference between men and women players in terms of retirement age. 

From teenager to the mid-30s

Playing time for active players could vary. Late 30s which has been a common time for many retired soccer players after usually starting it since teenager. A person can be a fan for a lifetime but that is not the case with footballers. 

There are no specific or rigid regulations regarding this but in most cases, a footballer can only spend around 15 to 20 years of career on average before retiring. It is rare that a player can spend more than 30 years like Kazuyoshi Miyura, who has spent 38 and is still counting. At the age of 57 years old, Kazu is still an active player for Liga Portugal 2 club Oliveirense as a loanee from Yokohama FC.

Retired soccer players

  • David Silva
  • Emmanuel Adebayor
  • Diego Godin
  • Gianluigi Buffon
  • Cesc Fabregas
  • Lucas Leiva
  • Joaquin Sanchez
  • Gareth Bale
  • Mesut Ozil
  • Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Soccer players who retired

  • David Beckham
  • Zinedine Zidane
  • Steven Gerrard
  • Frank Lampard
  • Didier Drogba 
  • Jamie Carragher
  • Gary Neville 
  • Xabi Alonso
  • Ricardo Kaka
  • Roberto Carlos

Soccer players that are going to retire


Do soccer players get paid after retirement?

Despite no longer playing for clubs, life can still be profitable for former players. There are multiple wealth sources for a player who has decided to end their professional playing career. Some people start a managerial career, or they live from sponsorship deals.  David Beckham is one of the closest examples of how life can still be profitable even after retiring in 2013.